I'm going to pop an incense, get a 10K egg incubating, head over to the closest gym and battle my 791 Hypno to take over the gym for Team Mystic…. Oh, and I better use a lucky egg for double XP.
This is an actual sentence that more than 7.5 million (as of Monday) people can understand. So how can you and your business take advantage of this crazy new phenomenon?
What's in it For You?
First things first - Pokemon Go is based off of GPS, and the game actually requires you to physically be somewhere to play. This means no more being a couch potato. Users are traveling around in search of "Pokestops" and gyms. Pokestops are more prevalent and give users the much-needed goodies they need to play the game. Gyms, on the other hand, are less prevalent, but are much more important for users to access.
If your company is lucky enough to have either of these nearby, then you are in an excellent position.
Because these areas are getting a huge increase of foot traffic, this is obviously good for storefront businesses. Companies can take advantage of this extra attention by offering discounts to users. But how to frame it up...
Once you reach level five, you now have to choose a team (Red, Blue or Yellow) of which to be a part for the entirety of the game. Knowing that these three groups of people are constantly battling to "own" locations within the world of the game (think of how "mayors" function on FourSquare), it's a great way to get involved.
Take advantage of this by offering discounts to the current team in control of the gym near your business, or rotate the team colors each day to offer something special. All of this information should be posted on your social channels for maximum reach.
(One of the best examples I saw of this was a brewery that had a gym accessible through its bar - whatever team had control got a $1 off their beers!)
But what about businesses that don't have a Pokestop or gym nearby or function solely online. How can you take advantage?
Another cool feature of the game is the use of augmented reality, which is a technology that superimposes a computer-generated image on a user's view of the real world, thus providing a composite view.
(If that's technobabble to you, essentially the app uses the camera on your phone to put the Pokemon creatures into the real world. And, as you can imagine, people are going crazy adding these Pokemon to all sorts of real-life locations.)
So if your business can't take advantage of having a well-placed brick-and-mortar location, you can at least take advantage on social media and whip up a campaign that involves having followers submit their best photos for a contest or giveaway. Try offering a campaign that asks users to submit their teams to show off their highest scores during battles.
These types of campaigns always perform well when all users have to do is submit a picture. You should get a nice bump to your engagement.
A quick history lesson -- Nintendo released Pokemon to the world in 1996, and it's added to the franchise constantly over the last 20 years, totaling more than 700 of these little creatures. Think about that. 20 years.
There is a much larger demographic for this type of promotion than what you'd perhaps expect. Walking downtown Sioux Falls, you'll see a huge variety of people playing this game, of all ages. And the generation of users who grew up on this particular brand has proven to be one of the most reliably nostaglic ones - it's most of the reason why this app is taking the country by storm so handily.
Is it Right for You?
Sure, like all trends, capitalizing on Pokemon Go might not necessarily fit your demographic. If you cater specifically to audiences who aren't particularly apt to pick up a smartphone or play a video game, it might not be lucrative for you.
But love it or hate it, it has undoubtedly caused a ripple in the norm. As of right now, it is best to take advantage while it's on the rise and enormously topical.
There are a lot of customers out there - gotta catch 'em all.